Water from thin air: Aussie Ed's Airdrop an international hit

The economy needs to be freed up so we can have more people like this get the world back on track with ingenuity and entrepreneurship! Taxing our talent will only kill this sort of amazing talent! Shaza 

An Australian designer has beaten 500 inventors to win a £10,000 international prize for his beetle-inspired device that is capable of extracting water from even the driest desert air.

With global temperatures continuing to rise and droughts set to become more severe, a device capable of literally pulling water out of thin air is likely to have significant global applications.

Edward Linacre's win for his Airdrop invention is the second year in a row an Australian has won the global James Dyson Award. Last year, the winner was Sydney designer Sam Adeloju, who came up with a life-saving bazooka capable of shooting an emergency flotation device 150 metres out to sea.

Italy's debt crisis: 10 reasons to be fearful
GREECE and Italy were the cradles of European culture: now they are threatening to drag the European Union to the grave.

While Greece's fiscal woes were worrying, Italy's are monumental. Even Silvio Berlusconi, pictured, one of the great political survivors of our age, hasn't escaped this one. The Italian premier is out as the country's debts threaten to take down stock markets around the world. Here are the top 10 reasons to be concerned:

Italy is the eighth-largest economy in the world and the fourth largest in Europe. Its gross domestic product was over $US2 trillion ($1.97 trillion) in 2010. Greece, Europe's other basket case, has a GDP of $US305 billion.

The country is label-queen heaven - Ferrari, Prada, Armani etc - and a major player in utilities, telecoms and banking. But the recession has put a strain on its economy and a succession of pop-up governments have failed to tackle fundamental problems, including the massive pension debts owed its ageing population. Italy's debts now top $US2.2 trillion, or 120 per cent of gross domestic product.


Surprising ETF Standouts Of 2011

After a record-setting October gave investors hope that 2011 would finish on a strong note, the first couple weeks of November have effectively taken any wind out of those sails. The culprit–surprise, surprise–has been the cash-strapped PIIGS economies of Europe, with Italy now grabbing the spotlight as a serious credit risk and a grave threat not only to Europe but to global financial markets.
And just like that, it appears as if we are heading to dismal end to a generally dismal year for many investors. The asset classes that had powered big recoveries in 2009 and 2010, such as commodities and emerging markets, have largely fallen flat this year. Most major benchmarks are in the red year-to-date, and it’s probably a safe bet that many investors have lost money this year.
There are, of course, a few bright spots; certain asset classes always thrive in chaos and others manage to buck the trend. But so far in 2011, many of the ETFs that have squeezed out impressive gains have been anything but the usual suspects; some unexpected securities have put up nice returns in a generally challenging environment [see Top Ten ETF Gainers Over The Last Five Years].